Yes, we all love summer, with its long days and warm evenings. We often reserve this time of year for fresher dishes, since it's hot out and there are so many vegetables in the markets. I'm a stew person, though, and regardless of the time of year, I love nothing more than to set a dish up to braise at low temperatures until the meat is falling-off-the-bone tender. And since it's tomato season, the stews I make this time of year are usually full of them.
This stew is rich and meaty, while still taking advantage of the incredible bounty of tomatoes that is no doubt overflowing your counters and crisper drawers this late in the season. It takes a few hours to cook, so it's a great candidate for a weekend supper or a low-maintenance weeknight slow cooker meal (cook on the low setting for 6-8 hours). I recommend picking up a fresh loaf of crusty bread to sop up whatever's left at the bottom of the bowl. If you want to add a little heat, try adding 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes with the rest of the seasonings.
About the author: Stephanie Stiavetti is a writer and cookbook author in San Francisco. Stephanie's cookbook, Melt: the Art of Macaroni and Cheese, celebrates America's favorite dish by recreating it with small production, specialty cheeses. Her food blog, The Culinary Life, is a repository for all things comfort food related, from savory dinners to transcendental desserts.